Knock-out stage introduced to schools premier cricket tourney
by Reemus Fernando
The Sri Lanka Schools Cricket Association has introduced a knock-out stage for its premier Inter School Under-19 two-day cricket tournament for the first time in history. The new format will also see three-day matches being played from the semi-final stage onwards.
Attempts made to introduce a knock-out stage for the premier two-day tournament during the last few years were in vain because of objections made by top cricket playing schools. Many leading schools had objected fearing that such a format would disturb their traditional Big Matches, since there was a possibility of traditional rivals meeting during the tournament before their Big Matches.
According to SLSCA officials no one has made objections to the new system this time.
The two-day league tournament will be played as usual with 36 teams playing in four groups. The top four finishers of each group will advance to the knock-out stage of the tournament. The pre-quarterfinals and the quarter-finals will be played as two-day matches. The semi-finals and the final will be played as three-day matches.
The SLSCA officials further said that the Limited Overs Tournament which brings all three divisions of the Under-19 tournament together will not be affected by the new format.
The Limited Overs Tournament will attract 28 teams from Division I, 16 teams from Division II and four teams from Division III category based on their placings at the end of the league (two-day) tournament.
Trinity College, Kandy, Ananda College, Colombo, De Mazenod College, Kandana, Dharmaraja College, Kandy, Maliyadeva College, Kurunegala, St. Aloysius’ College, Galle, St. Anthony’s College, Wattala, St. Benedict’s College, Kotahena, and Bandaranaike College, Gampaha.
Thurstan College, Colombo, Royal College, Colombo, Mahanama College, Colombo, Mahinda College, Galle, Maris Stella College, Negombo, Prince of Wales College, Moratuwa, Royal College, Panadura, Zahira College, Colombo, and St. Joseph’s College, Darley Road.
Lumbini College, Colombo, Anuradhapura Central, Dharmasoka College, Ambalangoda, Gurukula College, Kelaniya, Holy Cross College, Kalutara, Isipatana College, Colombo, Moratu Vidyalaya, Richmond College, Galle, and St. Servatius’ College, Matara.
St. Peter’s College, Bambalapitiya, D. S. Senanayake College, Colombo, Dharmapala College, Pannipitiya, Nalanda College, Colombo, President’s College, Rajagiriya, S. Thomas’ College, Mt. Lavinia, St. Sebastian’s College, Moratuwa, St. Sylvester’s College, Kandy, and St. Joseph Vaz’s College, Wennappuwa.